Pains of Being Pure at Heart
Copious subgenres have been thrown about to label this four-peice. Are they shoegaze? What about nu-gaze? Well whatever you wish to call them, they are undoubtedly one of the most consistent new bands around. With a nostalgic nod in the direction of influences My Bloody Valentine and Black Tambourine, TPOBPAH come out with their best EP yet, wistfully entitled Higher Than The Stars.
This beautifully crafted record is a roller-coaster of asphyxiating highs and jaw-dropping lows that whirls from motion to melancholy with soft, optimistic steps. It starts with the title track and an unswerving drum beat that keeps you neurotically tapping in melodic comfort alongside singer Kip's voice which sexually oozes with echoed longing and is noticeably softer than usual.
The fresh jangly-pop guitars are ecstatically rhythmic leaving you on an almighty high only to be slowly swooped down with following track '103' which pays ode to the bands earlier, atmospheric vibe. Synth-based track 'Falling Over' is the staple song, showing new strengths of the band with catchy, brooding tones while 'Twins' TPOBPAH's dirtier, fuzzier self. All in all this equation leads to an extremely complex, varied arrangement of songs and one hell of a masterpiece.
Rather than being stuck in an indescribable rut of labels and genres, the Pains of Being Pure at Heart continue to push the boundaries of their abilities, as their emotive EP presents, and unfortunately, much to the discomfort of the genre police.
with love, Aimée Albans